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Elias Papaioannou

25 February 2005
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 437
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Abstract
This paper uses a large panel of bilateral bank flow data to assess how institutions and politics affect international capital -bank in particular- flows. The following key findings emerge: 1) The empirical "gravity" model is the benchmark in explaining the volume of international banking activities. 2) Conditioned on standard gravity factors (distance, GDP, population), well-functioning institutions are a key driving force for international bank flows. Specifically, foreign banks invest substantially more in countries with i) uncorrupt bureaucracies, ii) high-quality legal system, and iii) a non-government controlled banking system. 3) Beyond institutions, politics exert also a firstorder impact. 4) The European Integration process has spurred cross-border banking activities between member states. These results are robust to various econometric methodologies, samples and the potential endogeneity of institutional characteristics. The strong institutions/politics-bank flows nexus has strong implications for asset trade and international macro theories, which have not modelled these relationships explicitly.
JEL Code
F34 : International Economics→International Finance→International Lending and Debt Problems
F21 : International Economics→International Factor Movements and International Business→International Investment, Long-Term Capital Movements
G21 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Banks, Depository Institutions, Micro Finance Institutions, Mortgages
K00 : Law and Economics→General→General
12 May 2006
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 623
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Abstract
Do high levels of human capital foster economic growth by facilitating technology adoption? If so, countries with more human capital should have adopted more rapidly the skilled-labor augmenting technologies becoming available since the 1970's. High human capital levels should therefore have translated into fast growth in more compared to less human-capital-intensive industries in the 1980's. Theories of international specialization point to human capital accumulation as another important determinant of growth in human-capital-intensive industries. Using data for a large sample of countries, we find significant positive effects of human capital levels and human capital accumulation on output and employment growth in human-capitalintensive industries.
JEL Code
E13 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→General Aggregative Models→Neoclassical
F11 : International Economics→Trade→Neoclassical Models of Trade
O11 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economic Development→Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
17 November 2006
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 694
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Abstract
Foreign exchange reserve accumulation has risen dramatically in recent years. The introduction of the euro, greater liquidity in other major currencies, and the rising current account deficits and external debt of the United States have increased the pressure on central banks to diversify away from the US dollar. A major portfolio shift would significantly affect exchange rates and the status of the dollar as the dominant international currency. We develop a dynamic mean-variance optimization framework with portfolio rebalancing costs to estimate optimal portfolio weights among the main international currencies. Making various assumptions on expected currency returns and the variance-covariance structure, we assess how the euro has changed this allocation. We then perform simulations for the optimal currency allocations of four large emerging market countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China), adding constraints that reflect a central bank's desire to hold a sizable portion of its portfolio in the currencies of its peg, its foreign debt and its international trade. Our main results are: (i) The optimizer can match the large share of the US dollar in reserves, when the dollar is the reference (risk-free) currency. (ii) The optimum portfolios show a much lower weight for the euro than is observed. This suggests that the euro may already enjoy an enhanced role as an international reserve currency ("punching above its weight"). (iii) Growth in issuance of euro-denominated securities, a rise in euro zone trade with key emerging markets, and increased use of the euro as a currency peg, would all work towards raising the optimal euro shares, with the last factor being quantitatively the most important.
JEL Code
F02 : International Economics→General→International Economic Order
F30 : International Economics→International Finance→General
G11 : Financial Economics→General Financial Markets→Portfolio Choice, Investment Decisions
G15 : Financial Economics→General Financial Markets→International Financial Markets
13 June 2007
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 758
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Abstract
Does cutting red tape foster entrepreneurship in industries with the potential to expand? We address this question by combining the time needed to comply with government entry procedures in 45 countries with industry-level data on employment growth and growth in the number of establishments during the 1980s. Our main empirical finding is that countries where it takes less time to register new businesses have seen more entry in industries that experienced expansionary global demand and technology shifts. Our estimates take into account that proxying global industry shifts using data from only one country-or group of countries with similar entry regulations-will in general yield biased results.
JEL Code
E6 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook
F43 : International Economics→Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance→Economic Growth of Open Economies
L16 : Industrial Organization→Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance→Industrial Organization and Macroeconomics: Industrial Structure and Structural Change, Industrial Price Indices
27 July 2007
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 787
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Abstract
This paper reviews the literature on the finance-growth nexus within a neoclassical growth framework, placing an emphasis on the policy implications in the current European environment, that has placed financial reforms high on the policy Agenda. While more research is needed to establish causality and verify the theoretical channels linking access to finance and growth, firm-level, industry-level, macro, and country-specific studies all tend to show a significant correlation between financial efficiency and economic performance. The empirical evidence hint that in underdeveloped and emerging countries financial development fosters aggregate growth mainly by lowering the cost of capital, while in advanced economies by raising total-factor-productivity.
JEL Code
G00 : Financial Economics→General→General
O : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth
24 September 2007
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 72
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Abstract
The extended period of limited growth experienced until recently in many European countries raises the issue as to which policies could be most effective in improving their economic performance. This paper argues that further financial sector reforms may be a valuable complement to ongoing efforts to reform labour and product markets. There is a long-standing view in the economic literature that well-functioning financial systems allow economies to exploit the benefits of innovation in terms of productivity and growth. Moreover, measured productivity differentials between Europe and the United States seem to originate particularly in the financial sector and from sectors that are particularly dependent on external financing. Building on and summarising the existing literature, this paper first introduces a number of concepts that are important for financial sector analyses and policies. Second, it presents a selection of indicators describing the efficiency and development of the European financial system from the perspective of a variety of dimensions. Third, an attempt is made to estimate the extent to which greater financial efficiency might improve the allocation of productive capital in Europe. While in the recent past the research and policy debate in Europe has focused on fostering financial integration, the present paper puts the main emphasis on financial development or modernisation in the context of the finance and growth literature. The results suggest that there are a number of ways in which the financial market framework conditions in Europe can be improved to increase the contribution of the financial system to innovation, productivity and growth. The most robust conclusions can be drawn for certain aspects of corporate governance, the efficiency of legal systems in resolving conflicts in financial transactions and some structural features of European bank sectors.
JEL Code
G00 : Financial Economics→General→General
O16 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economic Development→Financial Markets, Saving and Capital Investment, Corporate Finance and Governance
O43 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity→Institutions and Growth
E61 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Policy Objectives, Policy Designs and Consistency, Policy Coordination
25 June 2010
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1216
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Abstract
Although recent research shows that the euro has spurred cross-border financial integration, the exact mechanisms remain unknown. We investigate the underlying channels of the euro’s effect on financial integration using data on bilateral banking linkages among twenty industrial countries in the past thirty years. We also construct a dataset that records the timing of legislative-regulatory harmonization policies in financial services across the European Union. We find that the euro’s impact on financial integration is primarily driven by eliminating the currency risk. Legislative-regulatory convergence has also contributed to the spur of cross-border financial transactions. Trade in goods, while highly correlated with bilateral financial activities, does not play a key role in explaining the euro’s positive effect on financial integration.
JEL Code
F1 : International Economics→Trade
F3 : International Economics→International Finance
G2 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services
K0 : Law and Economics→General
16 July 2010
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1221
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Abstract
We identify the effect of financial integration on international business cycle synchronization, by utilizing a confidential database on banks’ bilateral exposure and employing a country-pair panel instrumental variables approach. Countries that become more integrated over time have less synchronized growth patterns, conditional on global shocks and country-pair factors. To account for reverse causality and measurement error, we exploit variation in the transposition dates of financial legislation. We find that increases in financial integration stemming from regulatory harmonization policies are followed by more divergent cycles. Our results contrast with those of the previous studies which suffer from the standard identification problems.
JEL Code
E32 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Business Fluctuations, Cycles
F15 : International Economics→Trade→Economic Integration
F36 : International Economics→International Finance→Financial Aspects of Economic Integration
G21 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Banks, Depository Institutions, Micro Finance Institutions, Mortgages
G28 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Government Policy and Regulation
O16 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economic Development→Financial Markets, Saving and Capital Investment, Corporate Finance and Governance